The Big Picture


by September 27, 2012

I am a woman of faith.

As a child when I heard people talk about faith I thought they were sharing the secret to a life unspoiled by heartache. As if a belief in God would keep loss and uncertainty at bay.   I was in my teens when I realized that often faith only makes hard things more bearable. Sometimes all it can offer is the promise that those hard things will be bearable someday, and my, don’t you wish that someday were today? In a way this new knowledge was a comfort to me. I would be wary of a God that packaged up everything nice and neatly with a bow on top. A majority of humankind has a difficult time deciphering IKEA instructions, so if there were a divine plan that we could comprehend completely in our mortality I would be ever so suspicious. It seems to me that if we are truly players in a cosmic creation then there will be some things that we simply do not understand. And that is alright with me. Because I believe that whether it is inch by inch or in a blinding light, I will one day have all of my confusions clarified. In the meantime, I can question. I can seek. And at times, I can wait.

These last few months, me and my faith have been knocked around a bit. The core is still intact but all those little bits flying around the periphery, well, some of those have been shaken loose. It might take me some time to get them all back in the proper alignment. I know my questions have answers. I know those answers existed before I did. I know they will be given to me. I am trying to remember that I can wait.

A few days ago I read an article about NASA’s latest, greatest achievement. They have captured “the deepest-ever view of the universe.”  And, my oh my, it is a thing of wonder and beauty,  all black and whirling color. The prettiest gems against the richest backdrop. When you read NASA’s article you learn quite a bit about their little picture. It contains 5,500 galaxies, their births and deaths. Much of the light travels from the beginning of the universe, only arriving to Earth millions of years after the fact, the ultimate grand entrance. When I reached the end of the article I looked for more, but that was it. A piece of the universe captured for the first time and only enough knowledge to squeak out eight paragraphs. So many things unknown and unsaid. I rejoiced in what they had discovered and marveled at everything they couldn’t begin to understand. And I felt blessed. Blessed to be standing on one of those swirling jewels. Happy for what I know, in awe of everything I have yet to learn.

It is all out there. I will find it. I will understand. Truth doesn’t change, rather it burns brightly in the night. I just need to have eyes that see.

I will question. I will seek. And at times, I will wait.

Because I am a woman of faith.

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